Wednesday, September 8, 2010

unusual greens : sweet potato greens ....stirfried

I found a few sweet potatoes in the bottom of a basket a couple of months ago and found them sprouting , just like the potatoes are sprouting these days. What fascinated me was the unusual color of the young shoots , it was a pretty purple and i just could not throw them away . Went out in the garden and planted them in a bare patch . they started having a few purple green leaves and i was thrilled to the beautiful shape of the leaves . The mali warned me that they will hijack the whole garden and will have to be thrown away eventually. I wanted to see how the sweet potatoes set underground and the leaves looked so beautiful too so i let them grow at their own pace . See how they are flourishing , the young leaves still have a purple hue but the mature leaves are green...


I started using the shoots for floral arrangements and even for a standalone green arrangement too , sitting on my windowsill . When i was talking to my mom about these one day she told me these are edible and her grandmother used to make a steamed patoda with it . That was enough to make me curious and i searched the net ( google mata as i call it ) . I found it is cooked in many countries and was impressed by the indo - chinese style stir fries . Found lots of info here and felt really happy to have found a daily supply of my greens.

I have already started stir frying the leaves as any other firm leaves Indian saag is made , especially the karam saag , and it is so yummy that i make it as a side everyday with my daal chawal . See the stir fried leaves i placed at the windowsill .


A large bunch of leaves is chopped roughly , 2 tsp of mustard oil heated in a iron kadai , a oinch of cumin , a few cloves of chopped garlic and a few broken dry red chillies .........wait till they crackle and dunk the leaves in , add salt and cover to cook . Stir a couple of times and it's ready....



Loved it with chapati and chawal daal both . The leaves are not mushy after cooking like spinach leaves , but are firm like karam saag ( a kashmiri leafy green which grows in water bodies ) so i made it like my mom used to make karam saag back home .

Next i will try the indo- chinese style stir fry and i am sure that will be great too. I am also thinking about some gravy like preparations with it ...

Aren't you surprised to see this , more fascinating for me is it's use a decorative plant . What about a hanging basket with it ? The shoots on my windowsill are just immersed in water , supported by a few large and a few small pebbles and it is surviving and sprouting more leaves for a month now.

13 comments:

  1. Dear Sangeeta
    I never knew, these are edible...we used to grow sweet potato when I was kid...but the leaves were never cooked.
    Photograph is very nice .
    happy cooking

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  2. Thanks for Appreciation Dear Ushnish ...

    Even for me it was a surprise that these leaves are actually edible..

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  3. very pretty plant indeed and am surprised to see its use. when I saw the post's name on my dashboard I was taken aback. thanks for introducing this to us.

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  4. That is lovely. Great idea to cook with any kind of greens because we don't even see these greens in the market.

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  5. Thats great... Love the idea..

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  6. Very innovative recipe, never tried these leaves.

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  7. sangita, pl tellhow to cultivate these as i have very little space in my flat balcony, do we need firm soil and should we use tender leaves. right from the day i saw this post iam longing to grow some sweet potato(mainly for the leaves)

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  8. Hi Nirupama....
    I planted the sweet potatoes which started sprouting by their own , you can try keeping a few sweet potatoes in a dark corner in this season so that they start sprouting and then plant then in a container if you don't have a garden . It should give you enough leaves to make a saag like this...:)

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  9. I have never seen sweet potato leaves that are so narrow. Check the sweet potato leaves recipe and the picture of the wide leaves at http://omnivore-almostveg.blogspot.com/2011/08/sweet-potato-leaves.html

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    Replies
    1. These leaves were grown from an Indian white flesh sweet potato. There are many varieties of sweet potatoes and the leaves differ in shape and size too...

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